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BuleriaChk

Helix and Classical/Flamenco Guitar

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I have tried many years (40+) to get a decent sound from a nylon string guitar from a pickup into a sound system/DAW.

 

In this research, I have tried many, many mFX's over the years (I now have a PodXT, a Boss GT-001 and a GT-1).  They all transfer the signal, but either have a bassy or harsh sound for my Takamine TC-132SC with Palathetic pickup/CTP-2 system.  The Takamine system has a great basic tone into my Roland Cube CM-30 monitors.

 

I recently evaluated the Helix, which provided an excellent sound in comparison.  I couldn't figure out the difference, but I had been using the GT-001 as my DAW interface, even for dry signal.  At first I thought it was an impedance issue; I then swapped it for a Focusrite 2i2 and the signal was clean; comparable to the Helix.

 

I think the issue is in the input A/D conversion; the units made for electric guitar simply are not FRFR at the INPUTS, whereas the reason the Helix in my case   sounds excellent lies in a much better input conversion scheme, which includes the dynamic range and frequency response for the classic/flamenco guitars, instead of just configured for electric.

 

My 2i2 sounds great into my DAW for my software modelers in comparison to the other mFX's - and the mic preamp in the Helix was the best tone to use as a basis for other effect....

 

If the issue is the conversion process at the input, there is no way to get the other modelers to sound good in my case, which means that I may upgrade from the 2i2 for an even better input to my DAW with Native, and will have to purchase a Helix if I want to leave my computer at home (the Helix also has an input for a Mic track for singing....)

 

Any comments on this perspective?  Searching for a solution for nylon string guitar (with pickup) has occupied me for 40+ years, and I think I have isolated the problem to the A/D converters.  Mics are not the answer; my Takamine sounds fine as far as its basic output is concerned.

 

In particular, I would like to know if the HD500x is comparable in this respect (input conversion); I really like the Helix but if the HD500x has the same input structure, it may be sufficient (I have very limited resources; the Helix LT evaluation cost me $50 in return postage).

 

Thanks,

 

Chuck

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[I have tried many years (40+) to get a decent sound from a nylon string guitar from a pickup]

 

buy the IK Multimedia iRig Acoustic Stage  and throw away your piezo.

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I just added a couple of the new 3 Sigma audio classical guitar IRs to my Helix yesterday.  I have a very basic 35 year old Ovation classical w/piezo, but reamping a track done with the piezo through the new IR's really woke it up. If you have a Helix already, for 10 bucks a pop I would give these IR's a try!

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I just added a couple of the new 3 Sigma audio classical guitar IRs to my Helix yesterday.  I have a very basic 35 year old Ovation classical w/piezo, but reamping a track done with the piezo through the new IR's really woke it up. If you have a Helix already, for 10 bucks a pop I would give these IR's a try!

 

Did you add anything special to your patch besides the IR block? I'm trying to figure out what's the best way to use the 3SA acoustic IR's. Right now my signal chain/patch is pretty simple: classical guitar w/piezo -> Helix Aux -> volume block -> 3SA IR -> reverb. I've also tried to add a pre-amp block after the volume block to color the sound and it works well. Also I'm not sure if the reverb should go before or after the IR block. I cant really decide what I like the best.

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Did you add anything special to your patch besides the IR block? I'm trying to figure out what's the best way to use the 3SA acoustic IR's. Right now my signal chain/patch is pretty simple: classical guitar w/piezo -> Helix Aux -> volume block -> 3SA IR -> reverb. I've also tried to add a pre-amp block after the volume block to color the sound and it works well. Also I'm not sure if the reverb should go before or after the IR block. I cant really decide what I like the best.

 

The only things I might do different are to add a studio compressor block before the IR, and possibly move the volume block to after the IR, so that the piezo signal is always processed by the compressor/IR. You probably want to adjust the low and high pass filter settings of the IR block as well, to cut any boominess or harshness.

I sometimes add other effects to my steel string sounds, depending on the song, but in those cases I'm looking for a special effect, not the purest acoustic sound I can get.

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I purchased IK Multimedia iRig Acoustic Stage.  It sounds great through the POD with headphones.  However, when I try to record it using Reaper, it sounds thin and trebley.  I also tried pulgging directly into the DAW via the micro USB port on the iRig (bypassing the POD) and have similar results.  Anyone have luck recording classical guitar?

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I thought the iRig Acoustic Stage sounded awful so sent it back. Thin and trebly is a good description. If you're recording classical guitar, use a good studio mic and preamp with your DAW and forget the other stuff. For live, I think using a quality pickup and the 3SA IRs is your best bet.

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43 minutes ago, soundog said:

I thought the iRig Acoustic Stage sounded awful so sent it back. Thin and trebly is a good description. If you're recording classical guitar, use a good studio mic and preamp with your DAW and forget the other stuff. For live, I think using a quality pickup and the 3SA IRs is your best bet.

 

Thanks for your response.  I was hoping to avoid micing since it can be noisy in my house :(

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I know what you mean. Its almost impossible to soundproof for noises .... you almost have to plan for quiet times to do acoustic tracks.

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